THT 10 years ago: NIC looks to build on its strength

Kathmandu, April 20, 2007

A clear focus to settle speedy claims and expansion of the agent network is likely to give National Insurance Company Ltd an edge over other insurance companies in Nepal.

Thisvision is shared not just by the chairman-cum-managing director of NIC, India but the management and employees of the company in Nepal.

On his maiden visit to Nepal to review the working of the six branches and two sewa kendras of the company, NIC chairman V Ramasaamy hoped to infuse the company with the determination to serve its clients better and earn greater credibility than others.

Citing the recent case of an accident victim whose group insurance claim for personal accident for Rs 200,000 was settled in three days and would be delivered to the nominee today, the official said, “We are targetting to achieve 90 per cent as our claim settlement ratio.” The total premium of about three billion rupees in the nonlife insurance segment in Nepal is currently shared by about 17 players with NIC being number four.

“With our focus to improve our market penetration substantially, we are targetting for the number one slot. But we certainly hope to become number two by the end of this fiscal,” promised Ramasaamy in an exclusive interaction with The Himalayan Times following a review meeting with various branch heads of the company across the country.

The CMD appeared buyoant over the performance of branches which he claimed had met their business targets despite facing difficult circumstances.

‘Govt, Maoists, MJF all guilty’

The Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights in Nepal (OHCHR) today blamed the government, the MJF and the Maoists for the Gaur massacre, which claimed 27 lives.

The OHCHR, in its report on the Gaur killings, said the incidents “highlighted once more” the weaknesses of law enforcement agencies who, aware of the potential clashes and other violence, were grossly “ill-prepared” to ensure effective crowd control. OHCHR Representative to Nepal, Lena Sundh, held a press conference to announce its findings.

“The Nepal Police and the Armed Police Force failed to prevent the violence from happening by persuading the

organisers to move or postpone the rallies,” the report said, adding, “They (police force) failed to stop the violence when it broke out.” The report said the police failed to protect those who were attacked and failed to arrest anyone. “The mechanism to coordinate security and law and order, the district security committee, broke down and failed to function on the day of the rallies,” it added.

The OHCHR investigation revealed that MJF cadres and supporters were preparing for a possible confrontation with the Maoists.